The term business location refers to the place where a company produces, trades or provides a service. While the terms business location and production location refer to a precise geographic location, a business location can have different geographic expanses:
- cities and communes
- associations from several municipalities
The entrepreneurial decision for a business location in the context of a start-up, company expansion or relocation is usually carried out after a previously carried out location analysis. For the economic success of a company the choice of the suitable company location is essential and at the same time often a great challenge. The business location orientation of a company takes the location decision because of its long-term impact a particularly important role. A qualified location decision is based on a well-thought-out analysis that takes into account all relevant site requirements. The quality or attractiveness of a business location influences companies in their choice of location. The higher the quality of the location, the more attractive the location is for companies. The awarded location quality varies from the point of view of the individual companies, as it is very dependent on the requirements on the company side. A general assessment of the quality of a location is therefore not possible.
Various location factors are used as evaluation criteria for a business location. Location factors are the totality of all relevant characteristics of a business location that can influence the location decision of companies. The different characteristics of the location factors of business locations lead to different location qualities, which in turn affect the attractiveness of a location. Depending on the company, there are clear differences in the assessment of the importance of the individual location factors (sector and business area-specific differences). One distinguishes hard location factors from soft location factors. Hard location factors are quantifiable and can be directly included in the site analysis. By contrast, the soft location factors refer to immeasurable aspects such as the economic climate or the quality of life. In the context of economic promotion, municipalities, regions and other institutions are trying to positively influence their own location factors in order to generate employment growth, tax revenues and attractiveness of the site through business settlements.